Deputy minister: Two Sri Aman road projects worth RM500 mln to proceed, not related to Jana Wibawa scandal

Rubiah (seated, right) taking a group photo with members of the media, ministry senior staff, and agency representatives in the 'Meet The Sarawak Media' programme today (March 18, 2023).

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By Wilfred Pilo

KUCHING, March 18: Deputy Minister of Rural and Regional Development, Dato Rubiah Wang, has assured that the two road projects planned for the Sri Aman parliamentary constituency will proceed as it is not related to the Jana Wibawa corruption scandal.

In assuring this, the Samarahan MP clarified that the two projects are under her ministry, not the Jana Wibawa programme.

“The road projects will be carried out as it is in the final design stage. From my ministry’s data, the road projects stipulated by the MP for Sri Aman are not under the Jana Wibawa programme,” she reaffirmed when met by reporters at her ministry’s ‘Meet The Sarawak Media’ programme at a hotel here today.

On March 16, Sri Aman MP Dato Sri Doris Sophia Brodie questioned what would happen to the two road projects following the Jana Wibawa corruption scandal.

The two projects involve the upgrading of Jalan Pantu, Kerenggas and Enkeranji with an estimated cost of RM141.9 million and the upgrading of Jalan Tuba, Muding and Pelaie with an estimated cost of RM354.5 million.

The Jana Wibawa programme was introduced in Nov 2020 by the government at the time led by Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin as a stimulus initiative to empower and improve the capacity of Bumiputera contractors.

However, Muhyiddin, who is Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman and Bersatu president, was charged on March 13 with abuse of power and money laundering in relation to the projects.

As several PN leaders were charged with corruption linked to the programme, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim said the government would postpone the RM5.7 billion worth of rural development projects under the Jana Wibawa scheme.

It was also reported that Anwar had given assurance that the projects would not be cancelled, but they would be reviewed and renegotiated as many had violated financial regulations. — DayakDaily